Packaged-food companies increasingly turning to snacks as they deal with stagnation in their base grocery business, analysts say

LOS ANGELES , March 16, 2012 () – Analysts say that packaged-food companies are increasingly turning to snacks as a growth market as they deal with stagnation in their base grocery business, Dow Jones Newswires reported March 15.

Gary Stibel, CEO of the New England Consulting Group, which has advised such clients as PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay, said that snacking is a long-term trend and the future of eating. Several analysts feel there’s enough growth in the US$560 billion global snacks market so that smaller players can begin expanding into the segment while larger players don’t have to be concerned with losing market share.

Analysts also say that another incentive is that snack prices can be raised more easily than those of some grocery staples. Additionally, snacks generally start at lower prices, are often convenient and are usually bought on a whim.

Packaged-food companies are approaching this segment in different ways. Frito-Lay, for example, is focusing right now on adding more premium- and lower-priced chips to its portfolio to capitalize on more growth in those price ranges. ConAgra Foods, meanwhile, is introducing already-popped Orville Redenbacher's popcorn in ready-to-eat bags.

The primary source of this article is Dow Jones Newswires, New York, New York, on March 15, 2012.

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